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Competitive
interest rates

3 Repayment
options

No origination
fees

For Degree-Granting Institutions For Degree-Granting Institutions

 

With college costs growing fast, it's time to borrow smarter. Get Started.

The Smart Option Student Loan offers these benefits:

  • A choice of competitive rates for undergraduate students1
    Competitive, variable interest rates from 2.25% APR to 9.37% APR. We also offer fixed interest rates from 5.74% APR to 11.85% APR.
  • Rewards for paying on time2
    Get a Smart Reward® in your Upromise® account of 2% of your scheduled monthly in-school payments that are made on time while in school with the Interest and Fixed Repayment Options.
  • Lower your interest rate3
    Receive a 0.25 percentage point interest rate reduction while enrolled for making scheduled monthly payments by automatic debit.
  • Get the money you need4
    Borrow up to 100% of your school-certified cost of attendance.
  • Choose the repayment option that's best for you1
    Deferred Repayment, Fixed Repayment, or Interest Repayment.

Applying online is easy—it only takes about 15 minutes to apply and get a credit result.

Get Started 

You'll choose your repayment option during the application process.

 

Encouraging Responsible Borrowing

We encourage students and families to supplement their savings by exploring grants, scholarships, federal and state student loans, and to consider the anticipated monthly payments on their total student loan debt and their expected future earnings before considering a private education loan.

 
 

Apply with a cosigner

If a parent or other creditworthy individual cosigns the loan with you, it may lower your interest rate—and give you a better chance of approval.

Cosigner release available

After graduation a borrower may apply for their cosigner to be released from the loan once they have made 12 consecutive, on-time principal and interest payments and meet certain credit requirements.


Lower rates for graduate students1

Variable interest rates from 2.25% APR to 7.27% APR. Fixed interest rates from 5.74% APR to 8.56% APR.

Graduated Repayment Period

The Smart Option Student Loan is the only nationwide private student loan offering a Graduated Repayment Period feature6, providing budget flexibility for graduating students. Students who graduate and maintain their Sallie Mae loans in good standing can request to make 12 interest-only payments instead of full principal and interest payments after their separation period.7

 
 

This information is for borrowers attending degree-granting institutions only. You must attend a participating school or have attended one in an eligible prior enrollment period. You must be a U.S. citizen or a permanent resident or a Non-U.S. citizen borrower who is attending or has attended a school located in the U.S. applying with a creditworthy cosigner (who must be a U.S. citizen or permanent resident) and required U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Service (USCIS) documentation. U.S. citizens and permanent residents enrolled in eligible study abroad programs or who are attending or have attended schools located outside the U.S. are also eligible. Applications are subject to a requested minimum loan amount of $1,000. Current credit and other eligibility criteria apply.

Smart Option Student Loans are made by Sallie Mae Bank or a lender partner. The Sallie Mae partner referenced is not the creditor for these loans and is compensated by Sallie Mae for the referral of Smart Option Student Loan customers.

1 Interest rates for the Fixed and Deferred Repayment Options are higher than for loans with the Interest Repayment Option. Graduate student pricing on the Smart Option Student Loan is limited to students enrolling in a Masters/Doctorate level degree program. Graduate Certificate/Continuing Education course work is not eligible for graduate student pricing. Variable rates may increase after consummation. Interest is charged while you are in school and during the 6-month separation period. Any interest that remains unpaid when you enter full repayment will be added to your loan balance.

2 Primary borrower must enroll in Upromise to be eligible to earn a reward into his or her active Upromise account of 2% of the scheduled loan payment amount for each on-time payment during the in-school and separation periods. Loan payments must remain current to be eligible for the reward. The Smart Reward Benefit and Upromise membership are subject to the terms and conditions of the Upromise service, as may be amended from time to time. Terms and conditions apply to the Upromise service. Participating companies, contribution levels and terms and conditions are subject to change at any time without notice. Go to Upromise.com to learn more. Upromise accounts are not FDIC insured, carry no bank guarantee and may lose value.

3 Either the borrower or cosigner (not both) must enroll in auto debit through Sallie Mae. The rate reduction benefit applies only during active repayment for as long as the borrower's monthly payment amount is successfully deducted from the designated bank account and is suspended during forbearances and certain deferments.

4 As certified by your school and confirmed by Sallie Mae, less other financial aid received. Sallie Mae reserves the right to approve a lower loan amount than what the school has certified. Requested amounts exceeding $99,999 may require multiple loans.

5 The release of a cosigner is at the sole discretion of Sallie Mae. Only the borrower may apply for cosigner release. The borrower must provide proof of graduation or successful completion of certification program, not be delinquent and have made 12 consecutive on-time payments of principal and interest immediately before applying, provide proof of income, pass a credit review that demonstrates a satisfactory credit history and the ability to assume full responsibility of the loan(s) individually, have no student loan(s) in default, must not be reported as 90+ days delinquent in the past 24 months, must not be in hardship forbearance and/or in a modified repayment program, be a U.S. citizen or permanent resident, and meet the age of majority in their state. Requirements are as of October 13, 2014, and are subject to change.

6 Based on a June 6, 2015 review of competitors' loan programs and repayment features.

7 Available for loans that first disburse on or after July 1, 2013 to finance academic periods that begin on or after July 1, 2013 at a degree-granting institution. Graduated Repayment Period (GRP) requires interest payments for the initial 12 month period of repayment when you would normally begin making full principal and interest payments (which typically begins six months after graduation) or during the 12-month period after your request is granted, whichever is later. At the time you request GRP, you must have graduated with no interruption in enrollment, be current on payments, and not be more than 30 days late on payments on any student loan. You may request GRP only during the two billing cycles immediately preceding and the two billing cycles immediately after your loan would normally begin requiring full principal and interest payments. GRP does not extend the term of the loan. If you are approved for GRP, your principal and interest payments will be higher than if GRP did not apply, and your total loan cost will increase.

WE RESERVE THE RIGHT TO MODIFY OR DISCONTINUE PRODUCTS, SERVICES, AND BENEFITS AT ANY TIME WITHOUT NOTICE.

Information advertised valid as of 6/25/2015.

Sallie Mae, Smart Option Student Loan, Smart Reward, and the Sallie Mae logo are service marks or registered service marks of Sallie Mae Bank or its subsidiaries.

Upromise and the Upromise logo are registered service marks of Upromise, Inc.

Other logos are trademarks or service marks of their respective owners.